THE ENERGY LEADER
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CARBONE AUTOMOTIVE GROUP JOINS FORCES WITH UTICA-ROME SPEEDWAY TO PRESENT NIGHT OF LEGENDS EVENT ON AUGUST 21
VERNON, NY- The staff and management of the Utica-Rome Speedway are proud to announce the return of the Carbone Auto Group as a major marketing partner in the upcoming annual Night of Legends event, scheduled for Wednesday August 20. This year’s edition will pay homage to the popular Outlaw Circuit era of the speedway which will be capped off by the Race of Champions Modified Series where the stars of the northeast will battle in two 50 lap events, each paying $5,000 to win along with a full program of 602 Sportsman, who will compete for a $1,000 top prize.
The Race of Champions Modified Series point standings have a familiar feel to them as track point leader Stewart Friesen is the series point leader, who is followed by both by Matt Sheppard as well. Rick Laubach sits in third in series standings followed by Anthony Perrego, Danny Johnson, Ryan Watt, Ryan Godown, Rocco Infante, Jimmy Blewett, and Tyler Dippel. Most of the series top 10 drivers are expected to be on hand plus track regulars Mike Mahaney, Larry Wight, Pat Ward, Ryan Phelps, and Danny Varin and more. Other top drivers that should be in action include Jimmy Phelps, Brett Hearn, Billy Decker, and many more.
With the Twin 50 format with each event paying $5,000 to win each and the companion 602 Sportsman event that will pay $1,000 to win and $100 to start, the night’s total payout is approaching $40,000 which will make this one of the biggest events of the summer.
Fans fondly remember the Outlaw Circuit days as some of the best racing in Central New York region during the early 90’s to the mid 90’s. Consisting of the Brewerton Speedway on Fridays, Fulton Speedway on Saturdays, and the Utica-Rome Speedway on Sundays, the circuit boasted strong cars counts and a dedicated group of racers that would run all three nights of the weekend. Started by the late Bub Benway and Eric Kingsley, the Outlaw Circuit grew into a popular alternative to Glenn Donnelly’s DIRT circuit. Not only were the tracks “Outlaw” by name, they were that way when it came to its loose rule packages which features small block alcohol powered Modifieds on drag rubber and the use of sail panels. Many of the legends of the Central New York region made the Outlaw Circuit their home which included Dale Planck, Donnie Wetmore, Roger Phelps, Paul Jensen, JJ Michaels, Tom Kinsella, Jim Mahaney, Ted Lamb, and many more.
The night will also feature Fireworks by Majestic at the night’s conclusion. Gates for this action packed event open at 4:30 p.m. with racing slated to go at 7 p.m.
In case of rain, this huge event will run on the following night on Thursday August 21 with the same time schedule.
The Carbone Auto Group was also the major sponsor of this event in 2012 for the hugely popular “Richie Evans Remembered” night. On that night, the speedway celebrated the induction of Rome native Richie Evans into the NASCAR Hall of Fame who was the first ever short track racer inducted.
Started in 1929 by a then 19 year kid, Joe Carbone in Utica NY, the Carbone Auto Group is now celebrating its 85th year in business. Not only do they offer a vast array of new cars; BMW, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Subaru, Nissan and Toyota, they also have an extensive inventory of certified pre-owned and quality used cars to choose from. Whether you’re shopping for a new or pre-owned vehicle or if you’re current one needs service, the Carbone Auto Group has it all. With locations in Utica-Rome, Troy, NY and Bennington, VT areas, they are ready to serve you. For more information, please visit them at www.carbonecars.com.
The Utica-Rome Speedway website can be accessed by typing www.uticaromespeedway.com into your browser, which has all the latest news plus schedule information, point standings, and more. The speedway office can be contacted by dialing (315)829-4557.
COLE CUP PRE ENTRY DEADLINE RAPIDLY APPROACHING
VERNON, NY-The second annual Cole Cup for 360 Sprints is still over a month away, but the pre entry deadline is rapidly closing in. Entry forms for the $10,000 to win event scheduled for September 6 event are available on www.uticaromespeedway.com and for a driver to get a free pit pass worth $35, the entry must be post marked by August 1.
Last season, a field of over 50 sprinters filled the pit area as they battled for the then $7,000 win. After battling weather and concluding a day later than originally planned, it was Stewart Friesen standing in victory hoisting the Cole Cup to become the first ever winner of the event. Friesen’s win didn’t come without any dramatics as he passed race leader Steve Poirier in the final turn on the final lap to grab the win.
Dave Franek is a guaranteed starter for this year’s version which he earned with his victory at New Egypt Speedway in the Turnpike 25 in June. Ironically, Franek was the first driver to send his entry in.
The rules are set up to accommodate drivers from the major series in the northeast including the Empire Super Sprints, Patriot Sprint Group, and United Racing Company.
MATT SHEPPARD MAKES IT TWO WINS IN A ROW AT UTICA-ROME SPEEDWAY WITH ANOTHER LATE RACE PASS
VERNON, NY-Matt Sheppard made it two in row this past Sunday night, July 27, as he again made a late race pass to score the $2,000 victory. A miscue by the leader Larry Wight on lap 28 gave Sheppard the opportunity he needed and he capitalized on it. Other winners on PERFEX Corp. night was Jeremy Vunk in the Sportsman, Chris Carr, in the Pro Stocks, and Bill Mason in the Pure Stocks.
Tye-Scott Rood and C.J. Castelletti brought the NASCAR Modified feature to the green flag, with Rood taking the advantage. Behind them, the Gypsum cars mounted charges, with Pat Ward coming from fifth and Larry Wight from eighth. By the second lap, the two were battling for the lead. Ward took his car to the middle of the speedway and Wight putting his right rear on the cushion. As they came around to the finish line, Wight took control. Ward fell in line behind him, followed by Jason Rood.
Back in the pack, the top two in points began to weave through traffic toward the front. Matt Sheppard, who started in 11th, hugged the bottom while Stewart Friesen tried the top groove as he worked his way from 12th. The duo made their way into the top five by lap 10. Sheppard was able to drive his machine past Ward, taking second and pulling away. Ward proved to be a tougher opponent for Friesen, as they battled side by side until lap 20, when Friesen was finally able to complete the pass.
Wight had a sizable lead, but Sheppard started to make up ground as the leader was running in lap traffic. With five circuits remaining, Sheppard seemed to be the faster car as he was closed in on Wight. With slower traffic running the middle, Wight decided to take the long way around the speedway to get around them while Sheppard stuck to the lane that got him to the front. With two laps left, Wight went into turns three and four a bit too hard and slipped up over the banking, allowing Sheppard to drive by on the bottom and take the lead, and ended up with the victory. With the victory, Sheppard takes an eight point lead in the point standings over defending champion Friesen. Wight took home second, with Ward in third and Friesen in fourth after he made the same mistake as Wight late in the race to allow Ward to get back by him. Ryan Phelps finished in fifth. Matt Janczuk, Mike Mahaney, Willy Decker, Adam Roberts, and Jason Rood filled out the top 10.
The Sportsman feature started with John DeForest at the head. A few cautions slowed the beginning of the race, but Claude Hutchings Jr. was able to take the lead after coming from sixth. Behind him, Jeremy Vunk started navigating his machine to the front after starting eleventh. He caught Hutchings by lap eight, and after another caution, he was placed on the bumper of the leader. On the restart, he dove to the bottom and took the top spot away. He would pull away and lead for the rest of the race. Hutchings settled for second, followed by Jack Miller, Steve Way, and Heath Carney.
Chris Cunningham took the initial green flag for the Pro Stock feature event, and led the first lap before conceding the lead to Bret Belden. He started to feel pressure from Chris Carr, who was coming from sixth. The top two battled back and forth until a caution on lap ten slowed the field. On the restart, Carr was able to pass Belden for the lead. With five laps to go, Carr was getting a late challenge from defending champion Tom Denton, but he was able to hold on for the win. Denton took second, with Mark Effner, Belden, and Glenn Forward trailing.
The Pure Stock feature event started with Frank Hyatt on the pole. He led the first five circuits before Chuck Cushman Jr., coming from fifth, took the top spot. Cushman led for two laps before having issues on his vehicle, which caused him to fall back. Bill Mason replaced him at the front, but he was being worked over by Hyatt. With five to go, Hyatt was on the rear bumper of Mason as they went down the back stretch, but Mason was faster in the turns, pulling away for his first win of the season. Hyatt finished the runner up, with Jim Thomas, Tim Janczuk, and Rob Thieme fulfilling the top five.
The final full month of racing begins next Sunday, August 3, at the “Action of the East” with Twin 20 lap features for the Modifieds with each event paying full purse and points. Also in action on Gates-Cole.com and NYCM night will be the Sportsman, Pro Stocks, and Pure Stocks. Action will start at 6 p.m. with gates opening at 3:30 p.m. Next week’s event will start the “Month of Money” for the Modifieds as $34,000 in first place money will be up for grabs until September 1. For more information, please log on to www.uticaromespeedway.com or call the speedway office at (315)829-4557.
PERFEX CORP. RACE SUMMARY
NASCAR WHELEN ALL-AMERICAN SERIES MODIFIED FINISH (30 LAPS)-MATT SHEPPARD, Larry Wight, Pat Ward, Stewart Friesen, Ryan Phelps, Matt Janczuk, Mike Mahaney, Willy Decker, Adam Roberts, Jason Rood, Tye-Scott Rood, Jim Mahaney, Ken McGuire, Jim Walsh, C.J. Castelletti, Steve Cummings, Dan Humes, Aaron Jacobs, Nike Nye, Joel Thomas, and Dave Moyer. DNS-
NASCAR WHELEN ALL-AMERICAN SERIES SPORTSMAN FINISH (20 LAPS)-JEREMY VUNK, Claude Hutchings Jr., Jack Miller, Steve Way, Heath Carney, A.J. Filbeck, Mike Stiles, John DeForest, Kyle Kiehn, Craig Pope, Randy Shantel, Mike Walton, Tom Tophoven, Lucas Heintz, Chad Ray, and Stephen Denton.
NASCAR WHELEN ALL-AMERICAN SERIES PRO STOCK FINISH (20 LAPS)-CHRIS CARR, Tom Denton, Mark Effner, Bret Belden, Glenn Forward, A.J. Digsby, Chris Cunningham, Matthew Larrivee, Ryan Lund, and Jim Money.
NASCAR WHELEN ALL-AMERICAN SERIES PURE STOCK FINISH (15 LAPS)-BILL MASON, Frank Hyatt, Jim Thomas, Tim Janczuk, Rob Thieme, Ron Hawker, Rusty Marsden, Ricky Breed, Ernie Staelens, Jerry Streeter, Chuck Cushman Jr., and Bryan Owens.
Get Well Wishes for Ed Ostrander. Hope to see you soon back at the track.
The staff and management of the Utica-Rome Speedway would like to extend their condolences to the Ward family on the passing of Bud Ward.
Bud was one of the most respected and well like people in the pits. Also quick with a joke or a good story, he was always a class act. The saying that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree is a perfect way to describe Bud and Pat Ward. Like Bud, Pat works hard and races hard and treats his competitors with respect.
Bud, you will be missed...RIP